"One of the false beliefs that it
is important to let go of, is the belief that we need another person in our
lives to make us whole. As long as we believe that someone else has
the power to make us happy then we are setting ourselves up to be victims.
A white knight is not going to come charging
up to rescue us from the dragon. A princess is not going to kiss us
and turn us from a frog into a prince. The Prince and the Princess
and the Dragon are all within us. It is not about someone outside of
us rescuing us. It is also not about some dragon outside of us blocking
our path. As long as we are looking outside to become whole we are setting
ourselves up to be victims. As long as we are looking outside for the
villain we are buying into the belief that we are the victim.
As little kids we were victims and we need
to heal those wounds. But as adults we are volunteers - victims only
of our disease. The people in our lives are actors and actresses whom
we cast in the roles that would recreate the childhood dynamics of abuse and
abandonment, betrayal and deprivation.
We are/have been just as much perpetrators
in our adult relationships as victims. Every victim is a perpetrator
- because when we are buying into being the victim, when we are giving power
to our disease, we are perpetrating on the people around us and on ourselves.
We need to heal the wounds without blaming
others. And we need to own the responsibility without blaming ourselves.
As was stated earlier - there is no blame here, there are no bad guys.
The only villain here is the disease and it is within us."
(All quotes in this color are from Codependence:
The Dance of Wounded Souls)
I state in my book that codependence is a lousy word to describe
the phenomena it has come to be associated with. A more accurate term
would be outer or external dependence. We are programmed to give power
over our sense of self worth - over how we feel about our self - to external
sources and outside conditions.
Nowhere is the result of this programming more disastrous on a
personal level than in the area of romantic relationships. Our subconscious
and emotional programming started with fairy tales that taught us that when
we meet our prince or princess we will live happily-ever-after. Movies
and books and songs reinforced the original programming that in order to be
whole and happy we must be in a relationship.
The result of this programming is that we are set up to feel like
failures in romantic relationships. When we give power over how we feel
about our self to another person in a romantic relationship we are practicing
toxic love - making the other person our drug of choice, our higher power.
A healthy romantic relationship is an interdependent relationship
- not a codependent one. An interdependent relationship is one where
two people who have a healthy sense of Self worth, choose to become partners,
to form a union. Two whole individuals - or more accurately (since
as I have stated in past articles, we are all wounded and learning to access
a True sense of self/Self worth) two people who are in recovery from their
codependency working on owning their inherent worth and wholeness as beings,
working on learning to be emotionally healthy and honest - who form an alliance
/ partnership with each other, not two half people who come together to feel
In a healthy interdependent relationship we give the other person
some power over our feelings - not over our self worth. Giving another
person some power over our feelings is a completely different thing than
giving them power over our self worth.
When we choose to give power away over our feelings we give the
other person the power to help us feel happy. That also means we are
giving them the power to hurt us. Caring for anyone or anything - a
pet, a car, etc. - means we have an emotional investment in our relationship
with that person or thing. To emotionally invest in a relationship
is to take the risk of getting hurt - of getting our hearts broken - if we
lose that relationship.
But it is not having our heart broken - it is not pure grief /
emotional pain - that can be so debilitating, paralyzing, and agonizing when
a relationship ends. It is the loss of self worth that we feel - the
level to which we have invested, are dependent upon, the relationship to feel
good about ourselves - that causes us to feel like we are going to die, that
can make us feel like we want to die. The blame and shame and judgment caused
by our codependency creates artificial feelings of inadequacy, of trauma,
of agony. The unresolved abandonment / rejection / betrayal issues
from our childhood are triggered and throw us into a place where we feel
the hopelessness and powerlessness that we felt as a child.
The critical parent disease voice - old tapes / subconscious and
conscious intellectual ego programming - tells us what losers and failures
we are. The wounded inner child places react out of pain and shame from
our childhood - the places within us where we feel unlovable and defective.
We blame ourselves for the relationship ending with codependent messages like:
if only I had not said that; I should have done that; I will
never have a good relationship; I will always be alone; etc.
Or we go to the other extreme and try to blame it all on the other person.
People stalk and murder ex lovers because of the blow they feel they have
suffered to their self worth - because they feel they have lost the source
/ drug that was making life bearable.
Getting our hearts broken is a normal and natural part of life.
Blaming our self or the other person is codependency. The emotional
pain of a heart break is very painful, but it gets better over time.
The blame and shame of codependency causes us to be bitter and resentful,
causes us to avoid relationships or to pick another person who will recreate
our wounds - another person to try to fill the hole we feel inside of our
"Loving and losing is better than never loving" when all we experience
is a broken heart. It is the blame and shame of the disease that makes
us feel like failures who are incapable of loving - like a victim of our own
A little over 5 years ago, when I had reached a place in my recovery
where I was secure in my self/Self worth, the Universe presented me with
an opportunity to experience a romantic relationship in which my worst fear
of rejection seemed to manifest - and I did not blame her or me. It
was an incredible experience - very painful, but also very liberating.
"It Truly is a completely different experience to have a relationship
where my self-worth is not at risk . . . . . if my self-worth is not at
risk then another person can only add to me, they have no power to diminish
me. What a gift." - An Adventure
in Romance - Loving and Losing Successfully
As that relationship was ending, before it ended, I wrote what
I think is one of the most beautiful pieces I have ever written. It
is called: A Wedding Prayer / Meditation on Romantic Commitment
"You are not the source of each other's Love. You are helping
each other to access the LOVE that is the Source.
The Love that you see when you see your soul in the others eyes
is a reflection of the LOVE that you are. Of the Unconditional Love
that the Great Spirit feels for you.
It is very important to remember that the other person is helping
you to access God's LOVE within you - not giving you something that you have
never had before." - A Wedding
Prayer / Meditation on Romantic Commitment
Anytime we see another person as our source of love, we will feel
a need to control and manipulate that person to be what we want them to be
- to be there for us to feed off of emotionally so we can feel good about
our self. There is nothing Loving about using another person emotionally
because we do not know how to feed ourselves by accessing the True Source.
Love can feel magical and wonderful - can help us feel like we
are soaring as the other person helps us to access the higher vibrational
frequencies of Love and Joy. To have the opportunity to experience Love
is one of the major reasons we have come into human body - but thinking a
romantic relationship is what give us worth is codependent and dysfunctional.
Romantic relationships can be wonderful opportunities for growth and Spiritual
Awakening when we start seeing them realistically, when we stop allowing
the perspective of the magical thinking romantic within us to dictate our
relationship with romance.
"You are not going to live happily-ever-after once you find your
prince or princess. There is no happily-ever-after on this plane of
existence. You may find your prince or princess but they will have issues
to deal with. Relationships are something that needs to be worked on
- not some magic wand that makes everybody happy." - Healthy Romantic Relationships
Part 1 - Interdependent, not codependent
Here a link to the Romantic Relationships section
of my web site for anyone who wants to find out more about toxic love or
any of the other dynamics I am talking about / or articles I cite, in this